This week is my birthday. I turn 55. This means a lot of things. I now can buy a 55-plus home at a Del Webb development. My AARP card is more meaningful to me now, entitling me to a plethora of discounts – hotels, restaurants, car rental, cruises, prescription drugs, movies, you name it.
I jumped on line just to see what kinds of discounts I am now eligible for. Amazing! On the first page alone, there was this great site, seniordiscounts.com. Also, the media is talking about how to access them – the Wall Street Journal, the Huffington Post and USA Today were all weighing in.
I am also now in a new demographic category. The sweet spot for marketers was always 25-54. If anyone stills thinks that, they are missing 58 percent of the market, most of which are folks 55 and over. Like me. And, guys, I like to spend money!
When I was in my 20s, I imagined myself at 55 as a stately woman with a grey bob, wearing lots of jewelry, driving a Jaguar to my bridge club. Now that I am about to turn 55, I am sporting a short pixie cut, drive a cute BMW SUV, do yoga, lift weights, meditate, spend lots of time outside, love my PR and TV career, cherish my community involvement and adore my rescue dog, Zoey.
Funny thing is, I feel like I’m still in my 30s. People tell me I look much younger than my age, and I can personally attest to not acting my age! I really do believe that 50 is the new 30. And “Ageless” is my new mantra.
Now that I am older and wiser, I offer this first-hand advice for women their 30s:
• Stay out of the sun. It ages you prematurely.
• Don’t get married just because everyone else is, or for just the money.
• Don’t get married just because he’s hot. Looks fade.
• Start saving for your retirement as soon as possible.
• Choose a career that you love, not just because it pays well.
• Love your mother. She may not be with you as long as you think she will be.
• Don’t smoke or do drugs. It makes you look and feel ugly.
• Drink in moderation, enough to remember what you did that night.
• Always brush your teeth and take your makeup off before you go to bed.
• Don’t ever take anything for granted; nothing is forever.
I am grateful that I’ve made it to 55. Happy birthday to me and to all of us who are now eligible for “senior discounts.” Let’s go shopping!